CELEBRATING DIVERSITY: Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party was held on Friday June 28.
CELEBRATING DIVERSITY: Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party was held on Friday June 28. Matt Taylor GLA280619PRIDE

A colourful show in support of diversity

A SEA of colour wound its way through Gladstone on Friday as the town's landmark first Pride March offered an outward show of support for the LGBTIQ community.

Organised by Headspace alongside lead agency Roseberry Qld, the inaugural march was timed to coincide with Pride Month, drawing more than 50 people.

Sarah Chadwick, who led the march, said she was excited to see so many people offering their support. "Living in a regional community like Gladstone, it's really important to acknowledge how diverse our communities can be.

 

Imogen Lisson and Maddie Robinson from APM disability employment at Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party.
Imogen Lisson and Maddie Robinson from APM disability employment at Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party. Matt Taylor GLA280619PRIDE

"A lot of people from the cities don't think anybody outside Brisbane really identifies as LGBTQI but we've had a really great turnout," she said.

"It's amazing that we're able to provide a safe space for so many of these young people who might be scared to come out or are just marching as allies, and I think the feedback will be overly positive."

The march started on Goondoon St before heading down the Dawson Highway to Roseberry Qld for an after party and celebration.

 

Headspace Gladstone and Roseberry Queensland held Gladstone's first ever pride march on Friday 28 June 2019.
LOVE AND EQUALITY: Gladstone's first ever pride march wound through the streets on Friday night. Matt Taylor GLA280619PRIDE

The Same Sex Marriage Bill was legalised in Australia in November 2017, with attitudes towards same-sex couples shifting. Centre manager from Headspace Gladstone, David Myles said acceptance and equality was on the rise.

"Flynn was one of the closest margins for the yes vote, but from what we've seen we've had a lot of support on our social media supporting this," Mr Myles said.

"It's just important for us to be visible allies to that community. Both Headspace and Roseberry are proud to support this community, who are over-represented in mental health statistics.

 

Margie Hooper and Taylor Stein at Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party.
Margie Hooper and Taylor Stein at Gladstone's first ever pride march and after party. Matt Taylor GLA280619PRIDE

"Young people who are LGBTIQ are up to 11 times more likely to attempt suicide so it's really important to show we're supporting them."